My friend Luke Burrage, of the Science Fiction Book Review Podcast, has been talking with me about the Planetary Romance subgenre of Science Fiction. We’re both big fans of it. It’s an old genre, probably best sired by Edgar Rice Burroughs with his novel A Princess Of Mars.
Here is the definition of Planetary Romance from the introduction to The Ultimate Guide Of Science Fiction: The Definitive Illustrated Guide (edited by David Pringle):
PLANETARY ROMANCE: a romantic adventure story set on a colourful alien planet, often involving an element of swordplay (or science fiction equivalent).
I bring this all up because the most recent Planetary Romance to draw my attention is one that’s Texas-sized in scope, but short in length (running under 3.5 hours). And of course the necessary swordplay element has naturally been replaced by gunplay – it is a planet full of Texans after all!
Lone Star Planet
By H. Beam Piper and John J. McGuire; Read by Mark Douglas Nelson
5 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 3 Hours 22 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: October 25, 2009
New Texas: its citizens figure that name about says it all. The Solar League ambassador to the Lone Star Planet has the unenviable task of convincing New Texans that a s’Srauff attack is imminent, and dangerous. Unfortunately it’s common knowledge that the s’Srauff are evolved from canine ancestors—and not a Texan alive is about to be scared of a talking dog! But unless he can get them to act, and fast, there won’t be a Texan alive, scared or otherwise!
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And, if you’re looking for more terrifically narrated Planetary Romance audiobooks you couldn’t do better than to start with another one read by Mark Douglas Nelson … The Green Odyssey by Philip Jose Farmer.
[Thanks also to libraryanne and James Christopher]
Posted by Jesse Willis
- Texas Radio Theatre takes on a Texas-sized project – Lone Star Planet
- LibriVox: The Planet Savers by Marion Zimmer Bradley
- BBC Radio 3: The Star by H.G. Wells (as read by Sir Patrick Stewart)
- LibriVox: Flatland by Edwin A. Abbott
- 2nd audiobook version of Andre Norton’s Star Hunter available
- LibriVox: Planet Of The Damned by Harry Harrison